Cristy Fry

Refrigeration class being offered next week

Fishermen looking to get more for their catch by installing refrigeration or wanting to better understand and protect their investment in a refrigeration system can take a hands-on class in Homer from a pro next week.

Marine Mechanical Solutions, which specializes in marine refrigeration, is coming to town for a three-day intensive class that will finish with a certification test.

NOAA lowers bycatch limits

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has announced plans to lower the bycatch limits for halibut in the Gulf of Alaska for the trawl and hook and line fisheries effective either immediately or phased in over the next three years.

Hook and line catcher processors will see a 7 percent reduction implemented this year; hook and line catcher vessels and trawlers will see a 15 percent reduction over three years.

Federal fishing act getting attention

Commercial and recreational fishermen in the United States are hoping that an amendment to the Magnuson-Stevens Act will address a misnaming issue that has unjustly penalized the fishing industry.

The proposed amendment is contained in the draft, called Strengthening Fishing Communities and Increasing Flexibility in Fisheries Management Act. 

Board of Fisheries Update: Setnetters’ fishing time for sockeye may depend on strength of king run

The Alaska Board of Fisheries hammered out a Kenai River king salmon fisheries plan that left the setnetters looking at possibly having only 12 hours of fishing time per week for sockeye depending upon the strength of the king salmon returns.

Under what is being called “paired restrictions,” when the in-river king salmon fishermen are restricted to catch and release, the restriction to 12 hours kicks in.

Kenai king genetics results ‘unreliable,’ says ADFG

The Alaska Board of Fisheries began a marathon 14-day meeting on Upper Cook Inlet salmon fishery issues on Jan. 30, and by mid-day Monday had voted on one of the proposals that most concerned the commercial fleet, No. 103.

The first day consisted of  Alaska Department of Fish and Game staff reports, all of which can be found at http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm?adfg=fisheriesboard.main. 

Board of Fisheries meeting on Upper Cook Inlet salmon fishery under way

The Board of Fisheries meeting to regulate the Upper Cook Inlet salmon fishery kicked off at the Egan Center in Anchorage on Friday with staff reports.

Some lower Kenai Peninsula attendees were unexpectedly late, hampered by a wreck just north of Cooper Landing that closed the road for several hours, prompting board chair Karl Johnstone to push back the deadline to sign up to testify from 9 a.m. Saturday to 11 a.m. Saturday.

ASMI fights rumors of tainted Alaska fish

The Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute is waging an informational campaign against persistent rumors online and in social media that Alaska seafood is tainted by radiation from the Fukushima nuclear power plant meltdown caused by the massive March 2011 earthquake in Japan.

While there have been problems with fish in the waters near the radiation leak, the affected species are not migratory, and are no threat to Alaska seafood.

Halibut quotas cut 23 percent from 2013

The International Pacific Halibut Commission made the hard choice last week and slashed quotas in several areas.

The quota for the commercial longline fishery in Alaska waters is 16.75 million pounds, a drop of 23 percent from 2013.

Here is the commercial quota breakdown by area:

• 2C, Southeast Alaska: 3.32 million pounds, up 11 percent;

• 3A, Central Gulf of Alaska:  7.32 million pounds, down 34 percent;

Strong run of sockeye forecast for 2014

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is expecting another solid sockeye salmon run in Upper Cook Inlet for 2014, but a weak return to the Susitna River may make management problematic.

ADF&G is predicting a total return of 6.1 million sockeye, 3.8 million of those to the Kenai River, with a harvest of 4.3 million by all user groups.

Summit teaches how to run own fishing operation

Young fishermen are preparing to gather for the fifth Alaska Young Fishermen’s Summit in Anchorage beginning Dec. 10 and running through Dec. 12.

Put on by the Alaska Sea Grant Marine Advisory Program through the University of Alaska, the summit has taken place four times since 2007, and is intended to be biennial going forward.

The event offers a chance to meet, socialize with, and talk about issues with other young fishermen from around the state, as well as well-known fishing industry leaders.

No sweeping changes in Pacific cod fisheries

The Alaska Board of Fisheries met last week to hash out proposals for the Pacific cod fisheries, but declined to make any of the substantial changes to state-water cod allocations that some fishermen were seeking.

There were a suite of proposals that would have shifted allocations to state waters in Chignik, Kodiak and Cook Inlet, and the board voted them down unanimously.

Bairdi tanner crab fisheries closed in many areas for 2014

The small boat fleet got some bad, but not unexpected news that the Bairdi tanner crab fisheries in Kodiak, Chignik and the Alaska Peninsula will be closed for the 2014 season.

The fisheries have been on a boom-and-bust cycle for years, with only two of the six Kodiak areas open last season, one of the two South Peninsula areas fishing, and Chignik closed completely.

The quota in Kodiak last season was 660,000 pounds, down from 950,000 pounds in 2012 and 1.47 million pounds in 2011. 

Opilio crab quota cut 19 percent

Bering Sea crab fishermen are getting pounded from all sides.

In addition to the potential multimillion dollar market hit from missing the beginning of the red king crab season as a result of the government shutdown, the opilio crab quota is down 19 percent, at 54 million pounds.

The quota has been on a roller-coaster ride recently, going from 54 million pounds in 2010 to 89 million pounds in 2011 and back down to 66 million pounds last season.

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Cristy Fry